The 2019 Infiniti QX50 is the newest member of the luxury compact SUV segment. After being revealed at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show and reviewed following a press drive earlier this year in L.A., we finally had a chance to pit it against its top competitors in Cars.com's 2018 Luxury Compact SUV Challenge.
Related: 2019 Infiniti QX50 Video Review
Infiniti last sold the QX50 as a 2017 model — it was pulled from the automaker's lineup for 2018 — and at the time we found it decidedly "meh." Going on sabbatical allowed Infiniti to power the new QX50 with an innovative engine, a 2.0-liter variable-compression turbocharged four-cylinder that makes 268 horsepower and 280 pounds feet of torque. The engine can change its compression ratio between a higher, more efficient ratio and a lower, more powerful one.
That engine is mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission and, in our tester, powered all four 19-inch wheels of the QX50. Our tester was a top-of-the-line Essential model, painted in Liquid Platinum with a Graphite interior.
QX50s at the Essential trim level with all-wheel drive start at $46,145 including a $995 destination charge. The model we tested also came with the ProAssist Package that includes rear emergency braking, adaptive cruise control and rear cross-traffic alert for an additional $550. It also had a $900 premium Bose stereo and a $1,200 package that added heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, side mirrors that tilt down when in reverse, and a power tilt/telescoping steering wheel. Total price including destination: $49,685, well short of our $53,000 price cap.
Come back on June 4, when we reveal the winner of our 2018 Luxury Compact SUV Challenge and find out whether the QX50's hiatus was enough to move it to the top of its class.
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